Spanish Primera Division report: Celta Vigo nab a point with late goal at Real Sociedad
Last Updated: 08/02/15 12:31am
Nolito's late strike earned Celta Vigo a 1-1 draw at Real Sociedad in Saturday's late Primera Division encounter.
David Moyes' Sociedad began brightly and were in front in the eighth minute when Imanol Agirretxe headed home from close range, but Celta grew into the match and were well worth a point at the Anoeta Stadium.
Moyes has presided over only three league victories since he took over the San Sebastian hotseat in November, but the point saw them climb two places to 12th in the La Liga standings, while Celta remain in 10th.
Sociedad were 4-1 losers at Real Madrid last Saturday and, eager to get back to winning ways and put daylight between themselves and the bottom three, they started brightly and were rewarded for their early endeavour.
A hanging cross from the right wing was met with poise by Xabi Prieto, whose cushioned header toward the six-yard box was headed home by Agirretxe to give the hosts a perfect start.
Celta sought to restore parity four minutes later but centre-back Andreu Fontas headed a Joaquin Larrivey corner wide with their first clear-cut chance of the match.
Agirretxe should have doubled his and Sociedad's tally moments later but he directed his half-volley straight at Celta goalkeeper Sergio, who saved with his legs.
Subsequent first-half chances were at a premium and the majority of the few created before the half-time interval fell to Celta from set-pieces, but they could not convert any of them and went into the interval a goal in arrears.
Celta upped the ante in the second half and Santiago Mina's 54th-minute volley from inside the penalty area required a decent save from Sociedad keeper Geronimo Rulli.
The visitors had another set-piece opportunity shortly after the hour mark but Larrivey's looping header cleared Rulli's crossbar and the Sociedad defence were allowed to regroup.
Celta continued their second-half dominance but Nolito could not cap off a free-flowing move from the visitors as he skied a long-range effort high over the bar when the Sociedad back-four gave him time and space to shoot.
Fontas thought he had won Celta a penalty when referee Santiago Jaime blew his whistle 12 minutes from time but, to his dismay, the official had awarded Sociedad a free-kick rather than a spot kick for the visitors.
Celta, nevertheless, kept plugging away and got their reward five minutes from time when Nolito drew them level with a high-calibre finish.
Substitute Theo Bongonda waltzed into the Sociedad penalty area and squared to the Spain forward, who shot on the turn and his fizzing low strike beat Rulli at the far post and nestled into the net to earn the visitors a well-deserved point.